While I can imagine teaching a course that intersects with the interests of a wide, non academic audience, a series of free, optional online public lectures would be great public service, but not great teaching.
I’m sorry if this bursts anyone’s bubble, but watching videos on the Internet and maybe writing a few very short essays that the professor never sees isn’t college. Real college classes have writing assignments and required reading. Real college classes require access to the professor. To say MOOCs like these can somehow replace an actual college education is tantamount to fraud.
But that fraud isn’t just going to hurt students left with no access to college but for MOOCs. It’s going to hurt society in general too. —More or Less Bunk.